I was a big fan of the X-Files from back in the day. My interest dipped sharply in 2000 when Season 8 started without Mulder. But, I hung in sporadically because I still enjoyed the format of the mystery/monster of the week. While I didn’t care for the UFO mythology shows anymore, they had come completely nonsensical by then, it was still better than TV than any “reality show” clogging the airways. Of the 19 shows in season 9, I probably watched all of 5. Including the tiresome show finale which really soured me on the franchise.
So needless to say, I wasn’t too thrilled when they dragged the show out of retirement in 2016 for a 6 show special event miniseries. And I was not disappointed, it was pretty bad, expect for maybe one show, “Mulder & Scully Meet the Were-Monster” and that was merely alright.
April 2017 rolls around and Fox decides that they can milk the dead cow once more and produce 10 episodes for an eleventh season in early 2018. So, like a moth to a flame on January 3rd I tuned into Fox to watch the first new episode. Can you say hot mess? The Cigarette Smoking man was still alive? Wasn’t he killed in a helicopter rocket attack back at the end of season 9? I didn’t even make it to the series title sequence, I turned it off.
I recorded the show anyway figuring I’d gather all ten shows and maybe binge watch them, so once I got going I would get into them. After about 3 weeks, there was nothing else to watch, so I tried to re-watch the first show again. This time I got past the intro and maybe 10 more minutes in before giving up in disgust.
When I learned the fourth week’s episode had been written by Darin Morgan, I decided that I was going to watch that particular show. Mr. Morgan has written 5 other X-Files episodes, 2 of which are among my top 5 favorites (Clyde Bruckman’s Final Repose and Jose Chung’s ‘From Outer Space’), 2 are in the top 20 (Humbug and War of the Coprophages) and the 5th was the only barely watchable episode from season 10 (Mulder & Scully Meet the Were-Monster.)
Well, unfortunately, The Lost Art of Forehead Sweat was a lot more like the last one Mr. Morgan wrote and not the other four. Even though there are 6 more episodes left in this season, this is the last one I am going to bother to watch.
At the end, Scully and Mulder are sitting together on a couch (in his place I guess) and they are about to dig into a batch of Goop-O ABC (think Jell-O 123) that Scully remembers fondly from her childhood. She had molded it in Mulder’s fake Sasquatch footprint maker because that was all she could find. As Scully scoops up a spoonful and brings it towards her mouth, she pauses, shakes her head, puts the spoon down and says, “I just want to remember how it was. I just want to remember how it all it was.” Fade to black.
A pitch perfect ending for me to go out on. And apparently for the actress who plays Agent Dana Scully, Gillian Anderson, to go out too, because at the very end of last year she announced flat out that she was through playing the character.
If Fox wants a season 12 of The X-Files it will have to be without the two of us.